Aug. 14, 2018
NewsScientific News

Rapid analysis of fentanyls and other novel psychoactive substances

Drug overdose deaths due to fentanyls and other novel psychoactive substances are on the rise.

Paper spray tandem mass spectrometry and high‐resolution mass spectrometry were used to identify and measure fentanyl analogues as well as common drugs of abuse in urine samples from substance use disorder clinics.

Ten‐microliter urine samples were deposited directly on paper spray cartridges previously loaded with internal standards, dried, and analyzed with no other sample treatment.

Quantitative results were obtained using MS/MS. Individual drugs were identified using high‐resolution accurate mass spectrometry and confirmed by data‐dependent MS/MS. Results.

Cartridges preloaded with internal standards demonstrated satisfactory quantitative results compared with LC/MS. Direct identification and confirmation of fentanyl analogues and other common drugs of abuse in urine using high‐resolution accurate mass and MS/MS fragmentation were demonstrated at low picogram levels.

Paper spray mass spectrometry can reliably identify and quantitate fentanyl

analogues and other drugs of abuse in urine.

Using paper spray cartridges as collection devices reduces exposure and transportation risks associated with biological fluids.

Original publication:


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